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Maldives Denies Russian Claims That Secret Service Kidnapped a Politician's Son 100

Posted by timothy
from the 30-year-old-napping-is-totally-different dept.
Rei (128717) writes As was previously reported here, the Russian government has accused the U.S. Secret Service of kidnapping the son of ultranationalist LDPR MP Valery Seleznev in the Maldives. The son, Roman Seleznev, stands accused of running one of the world's largest carding operations, with others charged in the affair having already been convicted; however, Roman had until recently been considered out of reach in Russia. Now the Maldives has struck back against these claims, insisting that they arrested him on an Interpol Red Notice and transferred him to the US, as they are legally required as an Interpol member state to do. "No outsider came here to conduct an operation," president Abdulla Yameen stated. "No officials from another country can come here to arrest anyone. The government has the necessary documentation to prove it." Note: the Slashdot post linked didn't include the accusations of kidnapping, but the Krebs On Security link above mentions these claims.
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Maldives Denies Russian Claims That Secret Service Kidnapped a Politician's Son

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday July 10, 2014 @10:35AM (#47424533)
    Let me guess. All of you who claimed the US overstepped it's bounds in the previous Slashdot article will now claim that the Maldives is lying to cover for the US. Rather than simply just admit your knee jerk reaction was wrong.
    • by Joe Gillian (3683399) on Thursday July 10, 2014 @10:45AM (#47424597)

      Actually, the only question I have is why the US didn't just say that Maldives law enforcement was responsible for the arrest in the first place. It could've been spun as good PR for both countries - "Cooperation Between US, Maldives Law Enforcement Leads to Arrest of Card Hacker" or somesuch. That would've quelled any questions about who was responsible for the arrest in the first place as well.

      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward

        Maybe because it wasn't the place of the US law enforcement organizations to discuss or even know what happened before the prisoner was handed over. I doubt they were completely unaware, but the earlier article mentions him being officially arrested at a court hearing in Guam, and makes no mention of the events leading up to that point.
        It is possible that the US law enforcement agencies did not want to say who captured him or how just on the off chance that the Maldives would've preferred to remain as clos

      • by Zontar_Thing_From_Ve (949321) on Thursday July 10, 2014 @12:30PM (#47425365)

        Actually, the only question I have is why the US didn't just say that Maldives law enforcement was responsible for the arrest in the first place. It could've been spun as good PR for both countries - "Cooperation Between US, Maldives Law Enforcement Leads to Arrest of Card Hacker" or somesuch. That would've quelled any questions about who was responsible for the arrest in the first place as well.

        How do you know that they didn't? The only thing we saw in Slashdot a few days ago was some article without any sources that seemed to claim that US agents were going buck wild in Maldives and made the arrest themselves. I, and others, pointed out in that thread that the article was likely a very badly written summary and I was sure that the Maldives made any arrest and only after a valid arrest warrant came through. Yes, I told (some of) you so.

      • by Xest (935314) on Thursday July 10, 2014 @01:48PM (#47426001)

        Meanwhile Russia has actually kidnapped a Ukrainian doing nothing illegal beyond defending her country against Russian state sponsored terrorists:

        http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/worl... [bbc.co.uk]

        I have zero sympathy for Russia in this case given that they're crying wolf whilst doing exactly what they're crying about to others.

      • by Talderas (1212466)

        The US only said they couldn't confirm or deny who made the arrest, which in this case was flak for the Maldives not to take responsibility if they so choose.

      • by superwiz (655733)
        Cooperating with the US would have been (and still is) a terrible PR move for Maldives. Russian oligarchs are their main customers.
        • The richest and most powerful Russian oligarchs are currently having some difficulties managing and funding their foreign enterprises due to targeted sanctions. I think the Maldives will get along just fine in the future. All they did was honor and fulfill their responsibilities and treaty obligations with Interpol. The guy arrested is the son of a top level and powerful Russian nationalist and a long standing party member. If this guy really wants his son back they could always exchange him for someone the

          • by superwiz (655733)
            Actually, the US sanctions are currently an ongoing joke in Russia. I saw someone post a photograph showing that some local gym was advertising that they were having sanctions against McCain and Harry Reid. The sanctions cover a few (very few) individuals. They are about as much "sanctions" as Obama's administration is "the most transparent in history." The Oligarchs managed to make their money in Russia in which every business, at the time, was ran the way the narco businesses are ran in the US (in com
            • My original post was in response to someone claiming the Maldives should fear the Russian Oligarchs. The very few individuals targeted are considered Oligarchs and close to Putin and extremely wealthy. Your average Russian citizen is not being effected by the sanctions. Those sanctioned have to be wary of having their foreign assets and bank accounts fall victim to the sanctions.

              • by superwiz (655733)
                That was me. Russian oligarch's are the "it" boys which maldives so attractive to Russians with money. And once again. They became oligarchs before Putin tightened the screws. The fact that they survived and thrived in the environment in which murder and fraud were par for the course of doing business should tell you that they are prepared for almost any contingency. Their wealth is virtually guaranteed to be impossible to connect to them or to trace in its entirety. The only real restrictions on them
    • Let me guess. All of you who claimed the US overstepped it's bounds in the previous Slashdot article will now claim that the Maldives is lying to cover for the US. Rather than simply just admit your knee jerk reaction was wrong.

      I don't remember anyone spinning any conspiracies and this doesn't counter what everyone was complaining about. The US took the son of a Russian politician into custody during a military crisis without talking to Russia about it first. What would your reaction have been if, while on vacation to England (or any other country for that matter) John McCains kid was arrested and flown to Russia overnight? The uproar would be insane. The double standard we hold for other countries is a bit of a joke.

    • by superwiz (655733)
      Maldives doesn't give two craps about the US. The reason it would lie (if it were to lie) would be to placate Russia. Russian tourism money is one of its main sources of revenue. Not just general tourism, but specifically Russian. Vacationing in Maldives is the considered the main indication that one "has arrived" in modern Russia. It's where the Russian Big Money go when they want to prove that they are BIg Money. If there is even a hint that they served as US lap dogs, this particular little vacatio
  • The Maldives saw their opportunity and jumped.
  • by benjfowler (239527) on Thursday July 10, 2014 @10:58AM (#47424701)

    Interpol Red Notices are routinely used by oppressive regimes to harass political opponents abroad. They're not always effective; governments seem to be free to ignore these things if it appears to be politically motivated.

    It's not a good look for the Russians to be so cheeky as to protest a common thief getting busted like this. I should hope that if somebody in (say) the UK ripped off a few thousand Russian pensioners over the internet, that the Russians could have him handed over (and thrown in Russian PMITA prison) quickly. Our Russian friends seem to have forgotten the notions of reciprocity.

    • Re:Red notice (Score:5, Informative)

      by drinkypoo (153816) <martin.espinoza@gmail.com> on Thursday July 10, 2014 @11:14AM (#47424789) Homepage Journal

      They're not always effective; governments seem to be free to ignore these things if it appears to be politically motivated.

      INTERPOL itself has no teeth. It's left to the nations themselves to decide if they care what it has to say on a case-by-case basis. It permits information sharing (etc) but does not require it. Their goal is "To ensure and promote the widest possible mutual assistance between all criminal police authorities within the limits of the laws existing in the different countries and in the spirit of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights" and not to enforce laws themselves.

    • by jon3k (691256)

      I should hope that if somebody in (say) the UK ripped off a few thousand Russian pensioners over the internet, that the Russians could have him handed over (and thrown in Russian PMITA prison) quickly.

      I would support this 100%. You go to Russia and commit a crime then Russia has every right to prosecute you for it.

  • If I were the son of a high ranking US government official or businessman I would not travel to Russia or any nation friendly with Putin.

    • Actually, I think "I would not travel to Russia or any nation friendly with Putin" is enough without any other qualifications.

    • ... or any nation friendly with Putin.

      So they can't go to Syria or Belarus. That doesn't seem like a big limitation.

  • accused of running one of the world's largest carding operations

    What's carding? Like hacked SIM cards or something?

    • by cdrudge (68377)

      Carding [wikipedia.org]

      It's basically verifying the validity of stolen or generated card numbers.

  • by MikeRT (947531) on Thursday July 10, 2014 @11:16AM (#47424799) Homepage

    But there are no credible reports of the US allowing criminals to just wantonly defraud Russian and Chinese citizens. While all of our governments spy on each other (and each other's economies), the US at least tends to take a dim view toward its citizens committing criminal acts against foreigners.

    • I have a sideline job doing computer servicing/repair. Since the issues between Russia/Ukraine have ramped up, there's also been a noticeable uptick in online/banking fraud coming from Russia.
      Thankfully the banks seem to be on the watch for this - the notify customers of unusual transactions, e.g. western union, to Russian accounts - so most of my work is just ensuring that machines are clean after the fact.

      I won't say that this is state-sponsored, but likely more to issues alluded to with this guy: mainly

    • by Rich0 (548339)

      Agree. The US even has the FCPA - it is outright illegal to bribe foreign officials. That law isn't enforced as well as it probably could be, but it is enforced and you do hear about a scandal from time to time. I know that my employer trains on the act and makes compliance a clear policy (though I have no idea how much they follow-through in practice - I wouldn't be privy to enforcement actions).

      I'm not sure to what degree this is the case in other countries.

  • by swb (14022) on Thursday July 10, 2014 @11:17AM (#47424809)

    Since it would seem to only lead to more focus on the mafia-like nature of the Russian government and the shadowy links between Russian government, intelligence and organized crime.

    I'm sure the US-haters and the Russian propagandists will begin their usual moral equivocation, NSA, CIA, banking, etc.

  • We can't waste an opportunity to blame America for overreach...stop, just stop.

  • by linearz69 (3473163) on Thursday July 10, 2014 @11:44AM (#47425015)

    The Russians have been protecting a suspected criminal fraudster who happens to be the son of a government official. These suspicions aren't thin. Seleznev has even admitted to his crimes. If its state sponsored thuggery, then the state is Russia, not US. Roman Seleznev is just another cyber criminal who was dumb enough to step outside of Mother Russia long enough to get caught.

    If this had been Snowden, then I think the argument for political motivation is real. But Snowden, his existence in Russian exile, gives Russia some leverage to make claim of political arrest and state overreach. The US government has put itself in a position where it looks bad even when it is doing something good.

    • Blurring lines between criminality and politics.?

      The two are synonymous. What's this line?

      • Blurring lines between criminality and politics.?

        The two are synonymous. What's this line?

        Since politics has historically existed in all recorded human cultures, is humanity corrupt and criminal by nature? What is the alternative?

        If one were to bring a political "system based on corrupt practice" down, how would it be replaced? And what about those who the inevitably see a new political system as criminal?

        Khmer Rouge, Blanc, and Bleu anyone?

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